An evolutionary biologist has watched a colony of E. coli evolve a stunning new capability, right in the lab. He let a single bacterium reproduce for 44,000 generations in twelve populations. It was just one of the populations that, around the 31,500th generation, suddenly developed the ability to metabolize citrate, thus doubling its available food […]
A Canadian military research expedition to the Arctic has found an enormous network of cracks spanning the largest ice shelf in the nation’s north. The pictures of these cracks — they’re more like canyons — are amazing.
Everybody agrees: Ben Stein’s new anti-evolution documentary is terrible. Surely these bad reviews are part of the grand conspiracy to stifle cdesign proponentsists.
Nobody knows. The ninety “perfect” platinum/iridium 1kg ingots cast in 1878 all weigh different amounts now, for reasons that may challenge our basic understanding of physics and the natural world.
Yet another study has shown that there’s no correlation between levels of solar activity and global climate change. Global climate change deniers have largely realized that their position is akin to denying gravity, and have largely moved along to asserting that the problem is solar flares. The trouble, of course, is that the facts just […]
Oodles of photos of the shuttle being prepped for launch. I want to see how the liquid fuel tanks are recovered.
People get upset when I point out that the medical belief that they hold dear is just a myth. So, for the record, the British Medical Journal agrees that there is no need to drink eight glasses of water each day, fingernails don’t continue to grow after death, shaved hair won’t grow back darker, turkey […]
Global warming deniers say that there ain’t nothin’ wrong with a little 2°F temperature increase — who could it affect? Ask a resident of Castiglione di Cervia. Global climate change has increased the range of tiger mosquitos, leading to an outbreak of dengue fever in Italy this August. The mosquitos’ range now extends into Switzerland […]
A few months ago it was widely reported that, all inputs and outputs considered, a Hummer is more environmentally friendly than a Prius. That struck me as entirely plausible, because batteries are notoriously environmentally demanding. Now the Sierra Club has done the math and found that the Prius is far better than a Hummer, better […]
In the movie “Contact,” Jodie Foster plays an astronomer who discovers a signal that, when decoded, proves to be instructions to build an interdimensional spacecraft. Great story — great movie — but the book had a far more stunning premise. In that, Foster’s character takes up mathematics, and discovers that, at about a sextillion digits […]